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Trader Knife.png
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"Your movement speed is affected by your weight total. You can also run faster with a Knife rather than a gun."

The Knife is the most basic melee weapon, which every player carries. It has a very fast attack rate and can easily cut off the heads of Clots, Bloats and Gorefasts. The Knife has an alt-fire attack, which is stronger but slower than the primary-fire and can easily kill a Gorefast with one swipe. It is a weaker version of the Machete, which has a slightly slower primary attack rate but is more powerful than the Knife. The Knife is often used to conserve ammo on the first wave of each game; a strategy for most players is to choose the Berserker perk and then simply slash all the specimens' heads off during the first wave.

The Knife also enables players to run faster while equipped. This is ideal for players who are low on health and need to find safety, or for players who wish to reach the Trader quickly.

The Knife may be seen lying on the ground after a player is killed while wielding it; however, it cannot be picked up because every player spawns with it and it cannot be discarded.

When in viewed in first person mode, a set of six tally-marks can be seen on the near side of the blade


The berserker perk receives bonuses for the use of a Knife.

Level Hit damage Fire mode DPS
Primary Alternate Primary Alternate
Base 19 55 26 50
0 20 60 29 55
1 22 66 33 63
2 26 77 41 77
3 30 88 47 88
4 34 99 55 103
5 38 110 64 120
6 38 110 66 125


  • Hit-and-run tactics work with the knife: run forward and slash, then run backwards to wait for the cool-down, then run forward and slash again, etc.
  • When confronted with overwhelming odds and a route of escape exists, swap to the knife and run away to a relatively safe area. Heal or find better positioning to deal with the rough situation.
  • Avoid engaging Sirens, Fleshpounds, Scrakes and other dangerous close-range fighters. While Siren can be interrupted with a well timed stab as she nods and Fleshpound can be kited away after making him whiff; an enraged Scrake won't stop at any cost until either of you is dead.
  • Knife can never really enrage Fleshpound at all. A simple stab to its back or when it's lit on fire, won't anger it. Only way to enrage him is apparently stabbing his back continuously for at least three times as a high level Berserker when he's also lit on fire.
  • Don't underestimate the power of the knife, especially if low on ammo and facing weak specimens. With practice, the knife can kill a group of four Clots faster than the standard issue 9mm.
  • Use alt-fire to decap Clots, Gorefasts and Stalkers on any difficulty by aiming for their throats with alternate attack. Even when you miss, a well timed knife jab can interrupt the attack animation Clots or Stalkers to flinch for a brief moment.

Advantages and disadvantages[edit]


  • Fast attack rate.
  • Generous 1.25x headshot multiplier.
  • Alt fire attack only slows down 50%.
  • Players move faster compared to wielding other melee while equipped.
  • Able to slash Clot, Stalker, Bloat or Gorefast's head off in one hit.
  • Part of free starter equipment.
  • Very hard to enrage Fleshpound with it.
  • A real ammo saver during the first wave.
  • No weight-blocks needed.
  • Small amount of damage still enough to keep Clots at bay.
  • A trained player can kite and kill every specimen beside the Scrake and Patriarch.


  • Limited range, requires one to get close to deal any damage.
  • No swing arc at its reach.
  • Slow to perform alt fire.
  • While still effective, too slow and lacks reach to kill Crawlers.
  • Nearly useless against the Scrake, and the Patriarch.
  • Generally ineffective against enemies other than Gore and Clots.
  • Weak damage, meant to be a movement advantage for positioning.

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